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About This Book
The Iliad dealing with the final stages of the Trojan War and The Odyssey with return and aftermath were central to the Classical Greeks' self identity and world view. Epic poems attributed to Homer, they underpinned ideas about heroism, masculinity and identity; about glory, sacrifice and the pity of war; about what makes life worth living. From Achilles, Patroclus and Agamemnon in the Greek camp, Hektor, Paris and Helen in Troy's citadel, the drama of the battlefield and the gods looking on, to Odysseus' adventures and vengeful return - Jan Parker here offers the ideal companion to exploring key events, characters and major themes. A book-by-book synopsis and commentary discuss the heroes' relationships, values and psychology and the narratives' shimmering presentation of war, its victims and the challenges of return and reintegration. Essays set the epics in their historical context and trace the key terms; the 'Journey Home from War' continues with 'Afterstories' of both heroes and their women. Whether you've always wanted to go deeper into these extraordinary works or are coming to them for the first time, The Iliad and the Odyssey: The Trojan War, Tragedy and Aftermath will help you understand and enjoy Homer's monumentally important work.